Alison Wolf

Sir Roy Griffiths Professor of Public Sector Management at King’s Business School


  • School of International and Public Affairs
  • King’s Business School




King’s Business School

Alison Wolf is the Sir Roy Griffiths Professor of Public Sector Management, and she sits as a cross-bench peer in the House of Lords. She specialises in the relationship between education and the labour market. She has a particular interest in training and skills policy, universities, and the medical workforce. The latter is particularly appropriate to the Chair she holds, established in memory of an influential government adviser on medical management. Alison's latest book is The XX Factor: How Working Women Are Creating A New Society (Profile Books 2013).

Alison is highly involved in policy debate, both in this country and more widely. In February 2018, she was appointed to the English Government's Review of Post-18 Education and Funding, as a member of the independent expert panel. She has been a specialist adviser to the House of Commons select committee on education and skills; writes widely for the national press and is a presenter for Analysis on BBC Radio 4; and in March 2011 completed the The Wolf Review, written by Professor Wolf, a Review of Vocational Education for the Secretary of State for Education. In 2015/16 she was a member of the independent panel on technical education, chaired by Lord David Sainsbury, whose report formed the basis of the Government's current Skills Plan. She heads the International Centre for University Policy Research, based in the Policy Institute at King's.

While most of Alison's current work focuses on the interface between education institutions and labour markets, she also has long-standing interests in assessment, and in mathematics education. Alison was awarded the 2008 Sam Aaronovitch memorial prize for her article in Local Economy on the Leitch Review of Skills. She has been an adviser to, among others, the OECD, the Royal College of Surgeons, the Ministries of Education of New Zealand, France and South Africa, the European Commission, the International Accounting Education Standards Board, and the Bar Council. She was educated at the universities of Oxford (MA, MPhil) and Neuchatel.

Alison spent her early career in the United States working as a policy analyst for the federal government, and spent many years at the Institute of Education, University of London, where she is a visiting professor. Alison was awarded the CBE for services to education in the Queen's 2012 birthday honours.


  • London 2030 and beyond: Report of the London Commission 01 January 2018
  • What's in a name?: The impact of reputation and rankings on the teaching income of English universities 01 October 2018
  • What's in a name? The effect of brand on English universities' fees 15 September 2016
  • Do 'learners' always learn? The impact of workplace adult literacy courses on participants' literacy skills 01 August 2014
  • The XX Factor: How working women are creating a new society 25 April 2013
  • Two for the Price of One? The Contribution to Development of the New Female Elites 01 January 2012
  • Contemporary sociological theory: expanding the classical tradition 01 January 2006
  • Contemporary sociological theory: expanding the classical tradition 01 January 1999
  • Two for the price of one?: the contribution to development of the new female elites 01 January 2010
  • How to shift power to learners: encouraging FE dynamism, replacing centralised procurement 01 January 2010


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